Saturday, August 21, 2010

Stellar Quest: Psionics...

Good Morning, All:

Here's a quick peek at the beginning of the Psionics section of Stellar Quest. After this introduction, I am describing the various abilities (talents) that fall under each given specialty. I'm allowing Eradanites to select Telepathy as one of their specialties, even if it isn't normally on their branch's list, since many of the Vulcans that inspired the race had telepathic powers.


Psionics is the study and/or practice of using the mind to induce paranormal phenomena. Psionic powers typically fall into one of several different fields of specialty: Clairsentience (the ability to perceive outside the known human senses and gather information at a distance), Psionic Healing (the ability to diagnose and cure disease and other physical ailments), Psychometabolism (the ability to control one's own internal metabolic processes), Psychometry (the ability to locate and perceive objects and the events surrounding them over great distances in space and time), Telekinesis (the ability to manipulate matter at a distance without physical contact), Telepathy (the ability to transfer thoughts and emotions, including the ability to know another's thoughts), Teleportation (the ability to move from one location to another without travelling through the intervening space) and Thermokinesis (the ability to manipulate temperatures at a distance, including starting fires or flash-freezing a location). At the Referee's discretion, other psionic specialties may be allowed.

Psionics are powered by Psionic Strength points. Every character that has a psionic specialty has a pool of Psionic Strength points equal to their Psi ability score. Using a psionic ability, called a talent, costs a number of Psionic Strength points, temporarily reducing the character’s total. Expended Psionic Strength points are recovered at the rate of one point per hour.

In order to attempt to use a psionic talent, a character must have the psionic specialty associated with that ability. If the character does not possess a specialty in that field, then they will automatically fail when attempting to use such a psionic talent. Having a given psionic specialty grants access to all talents associated with that specialty. However, if the character does not have enough Psionic Strength points available to completely pay for a given talent, any attempt to activate that talent automatically fails, and one of the character's remaining Psionic Strength points is spent.

Optional Rule: Sacrificing Health For Power
As an optional rule, a character may elect to take hit point damage in order to gain additional Psionic Strength points, at a rate of 1d6 points of damage for every Psionic Strength point gained. This damage is resolved at the time the character attempts to activate a psionic talent, and could result in the character becoming unconscious or even dead. Should such happen, the attempt to activate a psionic talent automatically fails.

Using A Psionic Talent
To activate a talent, the character must make a Psi ability check using the appropriate specialty (Telepathy, Telekinesis, etc), adding any other modifiers as given by the Referee. The Difficulty of the talent is given in its description below. He must also spend the listed number of Psionic Strength points if he succeeds, or one point if he fails. A character with no Psionic Strength points cannot attempt to activate a power.

Many abilities are ranged. The Psionic Range table lists the number of points required to project an ability out to a given range – these must be paid as well as any points to activate the ability. Each talent has a different set of costs, with the exception of Psychometabolism – all Psychometabolism abilities apply to the psionic character only.


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